Meet the School – Somerset College

Meet Somerset College

The Gold Coast is a hub for several of South East Queensland’s most outstanding schools and educational institutions.... We caught up with Somerset College's Head of Junior School, Rebecca Collie to gain some insight into Somerset College and find out all you need to know about enrolling in Prep at Somerset.


What’s unique about Somerset College?

Our school is unique because it is a Pre-Prep-Year 12 campus.  We have beautiful facilities and fabulous staff.


What’s your prep orientation like? What activities are in place to help my child and family settle into school?

To begin the enrolment process you will first meet the Head of Junior School for a chat and a tour if required.  We invite students to an Orientation Day in Term 4, the year before they are due to start.  On this day, they can interact with other students and teachers at the school doing some fun activities.  We ask our new Prep students to join us for another Orientation day on the final Friday of the summer holiday.  On this day we ask that our new Prep friends wear their new uniform, and we will introduce them to their teacher and teacher assistant for the year, who will give them a personalised tour of their classroom and other important areas.


We suggest enrolling as early as possible as Pre-Prep is our main intake year and we only take 6-9 additional students in Prep


How does your school communicate with families?

We use an on-line platform called Schoolbox.  During the enrolment phase we communicate via phonecalls and emails, but once you are enrolled in the system parents will be given the log-in details for Schoolbox, where they will find everything they need to know.


How can I help prepare my child for ‘big school’? Are there particular types of knowledge, skills or abilities children are expected to have prior to starting at your school?

The best way to prepare your child for school is to do a lot of positive talking about school, to set your child up for success.  In regards to learning, the development of oral language skills is key, so spend a lot of time reading and talking to your child.  Encourage your child to communicate through talking and singing. 


How structured is the classroom environment in Prep? What is expected of children in a typical day?

Our Prep students are incredibly busy throughout the day.  As well as classroom learning through play and inquiry, our Prep friends also enjoy Mandarin, PE, Music and Library skills.  We like our children to be active participants in their learning.  Somerset College is an IB School with students in the Junior School learning through inquiry as part of the Primary Years Programme.


Is there homework in Prep and what does this involve?

We do not formalise homework too early in the year for Prep students, but we do encourage lots of reading and supporting some learning through reflection and discussion at home.

What are some of the teaching and learning strategies used by class teachers to engage students requiring additional support?

We differentiate our programme to cater for all student needs, in a supportive environment learning through play and inquiry.

Are there any considerations I need to make when packing a lunchbox?

Keep your child’s lunchbox as healthy as possible, keeping in mind the need for a morning brain snack, morning tea and lunch.  Be mindful of the ‘size’ of the lunchbox as children are responsible for carrying and organising their own things. We are nut and egg aware. Please try to avoid packing these in lunchboxes.